a very warm welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to our viewers in north america and around the globe. my name's tom donkin. our top stories — french officials say the gunman who shot dead a policeman in paris had beenjailed previously for trying to murder officers. us ground troops have killed a leading member of the islamic state group in a commando raid near mayadin in syria. standing together — the us vice president and australia's prime minister say they're determined to curb north korea's nuclear ambitions anti—government protests continue in venezuela — 11 people are killed in the latest violence and looting. and from takeaways to box sets — wills and kate take to the airwaves for some revealing regal radio. hello and welcome.
it has emerged that the gunman who killed a policeman and wounded two others in paris was known to the french authorities. karim cheurfi was shot dead by security forces on thursday evening after he opened fire on the champs—elysees. the paris prosecutor said he had served a prison sentence for the attempted murder of two police officers. the issue of security has dominated the final day of campaigning ahead of the first round of voting in the french presidential election on sunday. thomas fessy reports. the french prepare for an election organised under a state of emergency. armed police and gendarmes have been a common sight in the streets since the 2015 shootings in paris. 50,000 of them have been
deployed across the country. security has been stepped up around famous tourist sites, like montmartre, in the capital. the french are also used to the presence of soldiers patrolling their cities. when the campaign started, many in france believed it would be defined by terrorism and security. it turned out voters have so far been more concerned about unemployment and the economy. it remains unclear whether thursday's attack will have a last—minute impact on people's choice. we've had enough of anxiety, and things like that, with all the attacks, and so on. so just wanted to ignore it, personally. so maybe it will have an impact, but i don't know. translation: i'm not worried about sunday in particular, but i am worried, in general, for all of us. ijust don't think our politicians really have a full grasp
of the problem. the most important, i think, it's economy, and economic recovery. this is the most important. more than security? yes, sure — for me. the champs—elysees have reopened and are bustling again but, on the pavement, a reminder of the attack in which a police officer was killed and two others wounded. on friday, the paris prosecutor francois molins revealed that the attacker had spent 1a years in jail and never showed signs of being radicalised. police questioned him again earlier this year over suspicions of terrorism, but he walked free. there was no proof to charge him. 0n the eve of the most unpredictable presidential election in years, thursday's shooting will have repercussions beyond the french capital. across france, people hope for a peaceful vote.
thomas fessy, bbc news, paris. the pentagon says american troops have killed a leading member of the so—called islamic state group. abdul rahman al—uzbeki was reportedly targeted during a commando raid near mayadin in syria. the pentagon says al—uzbeki was involved in plotting the new year's eve attack on a nightclub in istanbul which killed at least 39 people. 0ur correspondent in washington, laura bicker, says it was quite a complicated operation. the pentagon is giving very little away at the moment. we know there are around 500 us troops in syria. they mostly help out kurdish and arab forces, help train them, work alongside them. but we do know that there are some special operations forces, and on rare occasions they are tasked with targeting an individual, as in this case, it seems. now, it is very rare for us just to hear about it but it is also very rare for these kind of ground troop attacks to take
place, because they involve an extra risk. the us usually prefers a drone attack, usually targeting a vehicle, to minimise civilian casualties, and they usually use a hellfire missile. but on this occasion, they used ground troops to go in and target abdurakhmon uzbeki. so that is what we know about the operation so far, and we know that they chose to eliminate him because of his believed involvement in those istanbul nightclub bombings. and many people talking about the fact that donald trump has surrounded himself with very impressive or very respected military minds. a lot of operations are being launched. this is kind of what many people would not have expected from this administration, this early on. it is an interesting question as to whether or not this is a change of tactic. i'm not sure it is.
i think perhaps we are hearing about it a little bit more. donald trump has given more responsibility to his generals at the pentagon to deal with the so—called islamic state, and to get on with the job of, in his words, eliminating and obliterating the so—called islamic state. he has given them more autonomy to make decisions, and these are the kind of decisions that he is making. what is clear is that this is an unpredictable operation, and that is one of the things that america is making clear to is, by this kind of raid. look, we can do it, we have no casualties of our own, we can go in and take out your people. i think the other message here is to turkey, because they need turkey on—side to help in the fight against is. that is where most of their operations are based. so, when it comes to showing solidarity with turkey, taking out a man who is thought to have planned that nightclub attack on new year's eve, in istanbul, will aid them
in that fact. the us vice president mike pence has reiterated america's determination to curb north korea's nuclear ambitions. speaking in sydney after talks with australia's prime minister malcolm turnbull, he said pyongyang posed the biggest risk to the asia—pacific region. he talked about the changes of achieving a nuclear free he talked about the changes of achieving a nuclearfree korean peninsula. for more than a generation, there has been a consensus on the world community for a nuclear free korean consensus on the world community for a nuclearfree korean peninsula. in the 1990s, a nuclearfree korean peninsula. in the 19905, it a nuclearfree korean peninsula. in the 1990s, it was the subject of negotiations and agreed framework was arrived at. six party talks would follow. sometime later, the last administration embraced a policy of strategic patience, all along the way, the regime in north korea answer the entreaties of the world community is with broken
promises. and with continued pursuit, a headlong pursuit, off their nuclear and ballistic missile ambitions. and as president trump has made clear, and i've made clear asi has made clear, and i've made clear as i travel on his behalf throughout this era, —— area, but you're off resista nce this era, —— area, but you're off resistance is over. under the present leadership and working closely with our allies, with prime minister turnbull, and my meetings with acting president wong in south korea and others, the united states is determined to bring economic and diplomatic pressure to bear, working with all of our allies, and china, to ensure that we achieve a nuclear free korean peninsulas. let's speak to our correspondent in sydney, hywel griffith. but to see you. unsurprisingly mr pence mentions north korea quite high up in the news conference. that is because australia is a very important ally in the region for the
us. absolutely. australia is seen as some kind of guardian really for the us, point of view. 0ne phrase we heard from the vice president over and over again was that all options remain on the table when it comes to dealing with north korea. he stressed that us naval best vessels, —— us naval vessels may have a misunderstanding of the space in the region, they would be where they can actively be but counterbalanced to that, he spoke about the importance of china and what he says it will president trump leaves are encouraging signs from china but their willingness to act and take advantage of what he says unique economic role, their lifeline they provide north korea, in imposing sanctions and ringing the regime into line to ensure that the nuclear situation there doesn't become even hotter. what would have been good news to malcolm turnbull, he would
have been happy to hear that mike pence did on the deal with australia to resettle refugees. now, this was at the heart of that awkward conversation back injanuary, wasn't it? absolutely awkward. a phone call that really went pear shaped in many ways. so to give this background, this deal to accept up to 1250 refugees currently at an offshore detention centre off the australian coast was agreed in the 0bama administration. it much liked by president trump when he took over, calling it a dud deal on twitter. since then massive confusion about what will happen with these people and vice president pence reaffirmed and vice president pence reaffirmed and said the white house will not, if not admire, the agreement, and will consider these people for refugee resettlement. however he also stressed they would be subject to the same extreme betting efforts are much about from the us. by no means certain that the majority or even a large number of these people would eventually end up in the us so
while malcolm turnbull, the australian prime minister, would have smiled a hearing it, in the back of his mind he and many people would be wondering exactly how many people will eventually end up in the us. it was interesting to hear mike pence talk about the historic ties between the two countries because he would go as well as you that australia has been exploring the idea of looking more towards china than its old ally the us the mike pence very keen to strengthen those old tyres. absolutely. the big stress on the sort of military history shared between the countries go back to 99 years. and the current actions in the middle east, for example, in the fight against is. both men i think, that is where they are both men i think, that is where they a re closest both men i think, that is where they are closest at the moment, militarily, and we will see it going forward with attention in the korean peninsula, with actions in the middle east, and in all of the frontier. trade was one of the, a bit of a discussion, the tpp having been scrapped, australia was keen to build up that rand ally of
economically. however, they know the us is pretty happy with the bilateral deal it has with australia at the moment. sir we will see that one continue, i think. at the moment. sir we will see that one continue, ithink. good at the moment. sir we will see that one continue, i think. good to talk to you. the authorities in venezuela say at least 11 people died in violence and looting on thursday, making it the bloodiest day in three weeks of anti—government protests. 0ver that period, tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets demanding new presidential elections. sarah corker reports. another day of deadly unrest on the streets of caracas. riot police backed by armoured trucks fought running battles with protesters on thursday. the worst incident took place here, in the el valle district. 10 people were killed while trying to loot a bakery, some reportedly electrocuted. residents are now left to clean up after the chaos. translation: we lost everything here. if only it were just the food. everything is gone, and we all feel unsafe here,
at the edge of the slum. weeks of anti—government protests come as venezuela faces an economic crisis with shortages of food and medicine. president maduro has accused opponents of trying to topple him by force. now, he has called for talks. translation: i hope they have the courage to step forward, so that we can sit at the negotiating table, and tell each other the truth, and search for pathways to peace in venezuela. this is a call for dialogue, for peace. that request, though, seems to have fallen on deaf ears. opposition leaders repeated their demands for new elections. translation: the government can't avoid its responsibility. the violence that was sown by the government, what is the solution to this violence? the vote. over the last three weeks,
20 venezuelans have died during the unrest, and there are plans for new protests for saturday, and to erect roadblocks on monday, to grind the country to a halt. stay with us on bbc news. still to come — the big reveal. why this british city was turned blue in the name of art. the stars and stripes at half—mast outside columbine high. the school sealed off, the bodies of the dead still inside. i never thought they would actually go through with it. some places have already had nearly as much rain as they would normally
expect in an entire year. for millions of americans, the death of richard nixon in a new york hospital has meant conflicting emotions. a national day of mourning next wednesday sitting somehow uneasily with the abiding memories of the shame of watergate. and lift—off of the space shuttle discovery with the hubble space telescope, our window on the universe. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: officials in paris say the gunman who shot dead a french policeman, karim cheurfi, was a convicted criminal. being gay in the deeply
conservative, mainly—muslim republic of chechnya comes with many risks. reports of torture, kidnapping, imprisonment, even death, have emerged from gay rights activists in the past month. but chechnya's president has denounced the reports as distortion and slander. 0ur moscow correspondent sarah rainsford has been to a safe house and met several men who recently fled chechnya. their voices and identities have been disguised. rislan says he was tortured for being gay. we met in a safe house, after he fled chechnya for his life. he told me he was kept prisoner by the security forces there for more than a week, beaten daily and electrocuted. translation: they have a special black box, and they tie wires to your hands or ears, and shock you. the pain is awful, you scream. it's terrible torture. they used to detain people before,
all the time, to blackmail them. the level it's at now, it's extermination. the extermination of gay men. human rights activists are sure dozens of men were rounded up here in recent weeks. chechnya is a deeply conservative society, part of russia, but one that seems to live by its own rules. being gay is not accepted here. translation: people came to us. they wrote for help, anonymous and scared people, reporting what happened to them. it's hard to know the scale of it, but we know people are still being repressed. the head of chechnya has denied everything. with international concern growing, ramzan kadyrov was called into the kremlin. he said all talk of a gay purge was slander. vladimir putin's spokesman told me there is an investigation but no evidence. there have been threats, though. thousands gathered in chechnya's
main mosque just after the first reports of abuse were published. religious leaders accused the newspaper responsible of insult and they vowed retribution. reporting on human rights in chechnya has already got two journalists at novaya gazeta killed. when they announced a jihad on all staff at novaya gazeta, notjust me, that was pretty scary because it was the first time... it's kind of confusing and disturbing, because it reminds us the situation of charlie hebdo, when some fanatics can do whatever, because it's kind of a motivation for them. rislan‘s life has already been shattered. he says he can never return home. translation: i can't ever go back there. it's not just the security forces. my own relatives won't forgive me. it's a permanent stain. 0ur mentality means that,
even if the security services don't deal with me, my own relatives definitely will. after what he has already been through, he is also terrified to stay here. sarah rainsford, bbc news, moscow. a community fridge has been installed in south london, allowing people to leave unwanted food for those who need it. crowd—funding has paid for "the people's fridge", which allows small traders and members of the public to donate food. i like the mango. wow.|j i like the mango. wow. i have taken some carrot. the weather is so nice, i will make some salad. anyone can come and use the fridge. we don't judge people for doing so. so if you
are hungry, come and use the fridge. if you see something in there you like, comment use the fridge. —— come and use the fridge. we pick up a lot of produce that is going to waste, on british farms. and therefore there is always some produce that we can't sell. today we had a few surplus tomatoes, apples and pears from a supplier in kent, and pears from a supplier in kent, and some onions, as well, from suffolk. foodservice is a really unsexy issue. it is about dusty warehouses, and vans, and moving tons of products between where they originally were, to where they could go next. the fridge is part of
helping people understand that they, at an individual level, can pressure their supermarket, pressure their local restaurant, that they shouldn't be tipping food out of their homes into the waste bin, without thinking about what the impact of that is. i think it is brilliant. i have been here before, when i brought the grandchildren here, to show them. and it helps people. ooh, lots and lots of really delicious looking apples. surplus food is superfood, in that we should all share it, rather than food is superfood, in that we should all share it, ratherthan it food is superfood, in that we should all share it, rather than it go to waste. it's a crying shame that it goes to waste. the duke and duchess of cambridge have made a surprise appearance on bbc radio one. while promoting a mental health charity, kate and wills also gave an insight into their social lives, revealing a love of takeaways
and box sets. 0ur royal correspondent peter hunt reports. please welcome to radio 1 the duke and duchess of cambridge. 0h, oh, my god! with a destiny to fulfil, some dj—ing in the meantime. these are royals bringing their message about mental health to a young audience, and a confession about listening habits. i have texted in, yeah. under a different name? obviously, i wouldn't tell you who i was. definitely not! what are you doing texting in your car? obviously i stopped in a lay—by. i have not texted while driving, because that is illegal. the princely fan, who seeks shout—outs, and who was castigated when he missed a royal event for a skiing and clubbing trip, loves going to gigs. it's not something you can really do all the time? no, and you know, i've got in enough trouble with my dancing recently, so it's kind of best to keep away from that, to be honest. the price of such airtime, questions that wouldn't have amused victoria, like what takes their fancy for a tv supper. yeah, i'm not so good with the spicy food, though. i'm not good at spice.
if you do a takeaway, they must never believe you when you're ordering it to the palace, right? it doesn't usually get ordered to the palace, chris. right, i see. we tend to go and pick it up, not ourselves. i've got you, got you. go for a little visit around the area. he's not going to go to chicken cottage, is he? laughter. the professionals changed. the royals remained, and were set to work. the official chart with greg james and the duke and duchess of cambridge — go. he had 13 weeks at number one with shape of you. before harry came along and spoiled his easter. sounds familiar! laughter. radio bringing together briefly two national institutions, the monarchy and the chart show. so, number one is ed sheeran, shape of you. for a couple facing a life of pomp, this was pure pleasure. when i'm on holiday, would you mind stepping in? to be honest, we could probably do a betterjob. peter hunt, bbc news. it was rather an unusual sight on the streets of one british city last summer — thousands of naked people, painted blue. now, they are finally getting to see themselves as others did, all in the name of art.
colin paterson reports from hull, this year's uk city of culture. what makes 3,200 people strip off their clothes and paint themselves blue? that's me... laura dykes, support worker, hull resident and now hanging in a gallery. i really wanted to be on a piece art work in ferens art gallery, that's what drew me to it. i have a little boy who's about eight. i wanted him to come to the art gallery, and me to say, "that's me." it was july last year when people came from as far as japan and australia to take part in artist spencer tunick‘s latest photographic extravaganza, sea of hull, featuring four different shades of blue body paint. well, i was trying to bring the sea back into hull, over paved and concrete landscapes, and i think it worked out well. cheek—by—jowl—by—buttock, from a distance, it looks like a gigantic smurf nudist colony. i'm quite, obvious, just there.
but, with so many people from hull taking part, it led to more than a few awkward moments. i actually bumped into somebody from work, which was a bit awkward. but no, not really. everyone was there to do the same thing. so once everyone was kind of in the same situation, and they'd got their kit off, it was fine. how did the conversation go when you bumped into them? it was very much eye—to—eye, and everything was kept above the neckline. all the participants have been invited to this evening's launch, to find out which parts of them have made the final photos. i was kind of way down there, way off towards... you would think there might be some kind of nervousness or awkwardness, because you had to ask strangers help you do the bits you couldn't reach. but again, because everybody was in the same situation, it was just — i'll always look back on it fondly. the day hull turned blue, now making a lot of people happy. colin paterson, bbc news. that's it for me and the team, but
do stay with us on bbc news. hello there. we may well be heading towards the end of april now, but the weather is feeling a little bit wintry. particularly next week, we have got some fairly chilly weather on the cards. during friday there was some glimpses of sunshine. this was the view taken in south yorkshire by one of our weather watchers, and through the weekend there will also be a bit of sunshine, and things will be mostly dry. but temperatures still on the cool side, not quite as cold and frosty as it was earlier on in the week. during saturday we've got this weather front working its way slowly south across parts of england and wales. so that is going to introduce a bit of cloud, perhaps the odd spot of light rain here. northern ireland also seeing a bit of cloud and a few spots of drizzle. and then, through the day, some showers pushing into the north of scotland, but elsewhere, actually quite a good deal of dry weather. so this is at a:00pm on saturday afternoon. fairly cloudy for a time across central, southern parts of england, perhaps the odd light
shower here or there, and temperatures up to 15 or so. sunshine in east anglia, the midlands, parts of north wales, mostly cloudy for northern ireland but there could be some brighter spells. and for scotland and northern england, some sunshine, but i think towards the north of scotland we'll continue to see some showers, and perhaps even a little bit of snowfall on top of snowfall on top of the mountains. then moving through saturday evening and overnight we'll continue to see the showers in the far north and north—east of scotland. the winds tend to come down the east coast, too, so it will be quite chilly around that east coast. and clearer skies, so first thing sunday morning, temperatures lower than this in the countryside. but even in towns and cities, down to around five or six, so a cold start to sunday morning. if you're planning on running or watching the marathon in london then you might want to wrap up warm first thing. but by the afternoon, once the sunshine breaks through, it that should lift the temperatures into the mid—teens. across much of the country sunday not looking like a bad day. there will be a fair amount
of sunshine, some rain for the far north of scotland. most other places dry, and temperatures typically between around 11 or 12 in the north, perhaps 15 or 16 further south. high pressure not far away as we look through sunday night and into the new working week, and then we see low pressure moving in from the north. and this is when we introduce that very cold air. look at the blue colours, and those northerly arrows returning to the map for monday into tuesday. we could even see some sleet and snow showers around too. so monday into tuesday, then, one or two wintry showers, particularly in the north and the east. further south, it's colder, and there will still be some sunshine in between those showers. so to summarise the weather into next week, then, it is staying pretty cold. there will be a bit of sunshine around, wintry showers, and most places largely dry. bye— bye. i'm tom donkin.
the latest headlines from bbc news. the gunman responsible for the attack in paris on thursday has been named as karim cheurfi. a handwritten note defending the so—called islamic state group was reportedly found near where he was shot. us military officials say their troops have killed a leading member of the so—called islamic state group. abdurakhmon uzbeki was reportedly killed during a commando raid near mayadin in syria. the pentagon says al—uzbeki was involved in plotting the new year's eve attack on a night club in istanbul in which at least 39 people died. the us vice president mike pence has reiterated america's determination to curb north korea's nuclear ambitions. speaking in sydney after talks with australia's prime minister malcolm turnbull, he said pyongyang posed the biggest risk to the asia—pacific region. on day three of the election campaign trail, the prime minister